St. Anthony of Polish accent

Author: MARZENA KOSTRZEWA-STAFIEJ. Published: Sunday July 8, 2012

St. Anthony’s picnic

On the wings of winter wind...

According to already long established tradition, June 10, 2012, in the parish of St. Anthony’s in Nanuet, New York, there was an annual picnic, which was attended by almost all the parishioners, along with their families and friends.Interestingly, many guests also arrived from neighboring states.

St. Anthony of Padua is the patron of the Franciscan male and female orders and many fraternities. He is also the patron of the cities of Padua, Lisbon, Paderborn and Split. It is also the saint patron of: children, miners, marriages, brides, maternity, the poor, travelers, people and things lost. Also, just a little unusually, the saint patron of lovers in Brazil where on June 12 Brazilians celebrate their Valentine’s Day under the auspices of St. Anthony. From a practical point of view, one could say that this holy universal, nearly for all of us. All over the world, wherever got word of our faith, religious people remember him, and the day of his death - June 13, 1231. Especially, a number of RC parishes bearing his name celebrate it very solemnly. For centuries, the special nature of this festival is the celebration of the Italian tradition .A few days novena, a solemn mass and procession with the statue of the saint picturesque streets of Italian cities and towns completed fete, often bringing together almost all the inhabitants - it means not only faith, but the Italian folklore. The first time I came across the fete St. Anthony Messina in Sicily. Of course I've heard about this saint, but for me it was one of many. In 1983,., As a scholar at the University of Messina, looked at the great parade, to the joy of celebration, noisy festivities and fun with family and friends. I thought to myself: how different is a celebration of the contemporary, the grim reality of martial law in Poland.I did not know that St. Anthony, like me, had his Sicilian history. In 1221 years, going from mission to mission possessed by the Saracens in Morocco, he was willing to give his life for Christ. However, God's plans were different. Anthony mortally ill and had to return. In the Mediterranean, the storm caught him and drove his ship to Sicily. Before it went on further, the last trip to Italy, won the hearts of the Sicilians, and became one of the most important saints on the hot island. But I never thought that my academic Sicilian episode connects me once again with the saints. That after many years I hit the parish of St. Anthony in Nanuet, New York, where he eventually would find its place and refuge in exile exile. The parish itself collects more than 4,000 families, including some Polish. It is a place for a long time extremely friendly Poles. Of course, the US is a typical parish where a diverse community strongly formed by immigrants from Europe, Asia and South America.

Something for the soul
The course of events has not changed for years. For nine days preceding the novena is celebrated our patron, combined with the adoration of his relics. After the solemn Mass begins Sunday procession with the statue of St. Anthony. It circles the church and the sounds of traditional Italian melodies - performed a truly Italian band, brass band playing music because we know from similar procession set out on the set of "The Godfather" - march to the square to the school, where they meet all the participants.There, in a beautifully decorated gazebo, "sit" our saint, in the meantime, decorated with dozens of notes, and refuse the prayer meeting. At the end of this year prepared something new, namely the parochial school children released to "heaven" 6 beautiful white doves as a symbol of faith and peace.

Something for the body
And then began the great international picnic. Each parish ethnic group had the opportunity to present their dishes. There were a total of 28 stalls with food: Irish, Italian, Filipino, Spanish, Chinese, German, Haitian, Indian, as well as cotton candy, hot dogs and hamburgers, popcorn, drinks etc. All the stands were prepared on the basis of donations or sponsors donations of parishioners who just kind of "family" delivered specialties from their home kitchen.

This year, we, as a group of Poland, in the culinary were represented only by a small child organization - Sunshine Club. But it turned out to be our stand richest in its regional presentation. Of course, invited to taste Polish dumplings, sausages with sauerkraut, sausages with onions, homely meatballs in mushroom sauce, white sausage with vegetables, roast chicken with sauces, stuffed cabbage and a wide range of salads, including red cabbage and green beans. There were also delicious Polish stew and bread. There were also traditional pastries: cheesecake, apple pie, poppy seed cakes, cupcakes, donuts, butter cookies and delicacies. In a word - lick fingers. Just like every year, we were besieged by the participants of the picnic. Although five of Polish dishes served up, it was hard to keep up with the willing support - hence the Sunshine Club to stand still was a long queue.

Something for culture
When large numbers gathered under a huge tent feasted, began performances. National dances as always started Filipinos, who are the largest ethnic group in the parish. Then there were dances American, Hindu, there was also a soloist with Haiti. This year, the biggest applause was awarded the Polish group. But it was not a group, the whole Song and Dance Ensemble Glade. When the beautiful costumes, the rhythm of oberek, entered the first young dancers, we could see the surprise on the faces of the congregation. That did not expect. It is these magnificent, ornate costumes, as well as the beauty of dancing, done at all impressive. And then there was another group, even younger age, in costumes from another region Polish. It was the dance programs, arranged periodically, at least five, but when I entered the youngest group of children, even the audience went wild. That's what we presented our Polish-American culture.Through dancing, singing, the beauty and richness of our costumes from many regions of Polish. A youth, talent and commitment of artists was supremely admirable. It was a moving experience so that the audience had tears in their eyes. Did not stop applause and cries of admiration, opinions about the great professionalism of dancers, congratulations and praise that we have such a capable young people. Very colorful costumes, singing children, well-developed program, during which the audience could enjoy dancing Highlanders, a suite of Krakow, dances Kurpian, Kashubian, Silesian and Podlaskie. The choreography was fantastic program arranged by Hanna Dejean. Hanna is one of those people, so that the team exists and develops. You can see her vast knowledge, professionalism, care of details, as well as the constant search for new talent. Looking at her engagement, we believe that the more often we hear about the band.

Glade team
Was established in October 2006 in Bridgeport. Owes its existence to our compatriots living in Connecticut. The team consists of six groups of artists: young children from 2 years old, middle-aged, youth, the fourth dance group are adults. It is also the band and a group of singers. Currently it is 88 people. Polana team, in contrast to other folk, does not receive any subsidies from the Polish community organizations. Maintained solely by the contributions of its members and an annual income built up of the events: dances, picnics, selling homemade pastries and traditional Christmas Eve dumplings.

Artistic director and instructor of dance in one person working without pay since the inception of the team. None of the members of the team does not have a financial profits for their work. All income is spent on buying new clothes imported directly from the Polish. In January 2012, the band presented a 2-hour English-Polish Christmas concert entitled "Following the star" in the Square One Theatre in Stratford, CT. The concert was a great event for both the team members and the local Polish-American community.

The common love for dance, the desire to communicate to their children and grandchildren in the future, the particles of our culture, our Polish tradition, have resulted in such a professional team. Team not only in the artistic sense, but also a team of people who are a Polish-American family. Thus found a key connecting all hearts.Admiration and respect of Americans have experienced even here in Nanuet, is the greatest reward for both of these great artists and artists, as well as for us, all members of the Polish community in the United States.

We owe it to the people who, although they live outside of our country, it are the faithful, his attitude and actions bind us and remind us how we are inwardly rich nation.Glade team is headquartered in Bridgeport, Connecticut. It works with the parish and the School of Polish Language and Culture to them. Pope John Paul II at St.. Michael.

See you next year
Also picnic youngest participants had many attractions. Parish prepared arts and arts, willing able to "let off steam" in castles, slides, mazes, play basketball and so on. On behalf of the Club Sunshine (PACS), I would like to thank everyone for the tremendous amount of work, and for supporting us donations: Piast shop owners and Golden Eagle with Garfield, Banas Bakery of Wallington and Sikorski's Meat in Greenpoint, and Pilsudski Institute of NYC, so that we could show our beautiful Polish-American culture and its culinary riches. Special thanks to the team Glade, our new friends in Connecticut, as well as representatives and volunteers of our organization: Monica Fijor, Basia Stankiewicz, Wojtek Łuczak, Magda Krawczyk and Adam Stafiejowi.